The Greenville Eastern North Carolina (ENC) Alliance is proud to be a co-sponsor of the Greenville-Pitt County Chamber of Commerce’s Grow Local Week, in partnership with Catalent, Pitt County Economic Development, and Pitt County Schools. The week-long initiative runs from March 27 to March 31, 2023. Grow Local is a no-cost business/educator initiative designed to introduce, involve, inspire, and invest in the future of our community and workforce.
“As we work to support growth of a healthy workforce pipeline it is critical that kids in middle school and high school have an opportunity to see, feel, and hear about great future careers right here in their own backyard,” said David Horn, director of investor and community relations for the Greenville ENC Alliance. Horn has served as the co-chair for this year’s initiative and is passionate about workforce development to support the area’s current and future industries.
Grow Local, originally introduced in 2018, is a program designed to create and unveil career interests, grow the talent pipeline, and connect local businesses to future employees. The program has matched 2,938 middle and high school students to participate in an on or off-campus experience, giving them the opportunity to learn more about all career opportunities available within their host business. These experiences are made possible by the 86 local businesses participating, along with partnerships from Pitt County Schools and the Pitt County Educational Foundation.
“As we work on delivering more well-paying jobs that provide rewarding long-term careers, the impressions made on young students helps inspire them to think about a future career pathway,” added Horn. “Grow Local is one of the most powerful ways to accomplish this and we are honored to support the initiative.”
From tours of local businesses, conversations with business leaders, and hands-on activities, students will have a first-hand experience at a day in the life of an employee in a field relevant to curriculum they are studying in their class.
“Early exposure to career options is an essential component to preparing students for the workforce of the future,” said Trent McGee, president and CEO of the Greenville-Pitt County Chamber of Commerce. “Through a collaborative approach, Grow Local brings to light several career pathways available in Pitt County, provides students with the opportunity to experience an actual career, and connects businesses to future employees – all of which will assist with talent retention and reinforce economic opportunities within Pitt County.”
The Greenville-Pitt County Chamber of Commerce is excited to welcome Be Pro Be Proud on Tuesday, March 28 and Wednesday, March 29 in the Pitt Community College G. Henry Leslie Building parking lot. Be Pro Be Proud is an initiative to generate students, parent, and educator interest in technical professions. This program utilizes two custom-built exhibition trailers equipped with virtual reality technology to give middle and high school students hands-on experience with skilled professions within the construction, manufacturing, transportation, and utility industries. Be Pro Be Proud NC aims to change perceptions of technical careers and increase training to address longstanding labor shortages in skilled trades professions. If you are interested in visiting the exhibition trailers, email Kimber Stone at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Additional sponsors for Grow Local include the City of Greenville, North Carolina Biotechnology Center, Truist, Avient, Greenville Utilities Commission, Hyster-Yale Group, Optimum, and Express Employment Professionals.
To find out more about Grow Local, please visit greenvillenc.org/growlocal.